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by Kimberly St. John
“Hillsboro is one of the best kept secrets around,” says Bag & Baggage Productions Artistic Director Scott Palmer.
Add to that the fact that live performance is one of the most exciting forms of entertainment, and it’s time for you and your sweetheart to head west for the perfect date. Bag & Baggage Productions theater company is always worth your time. This September, they are performing “The Graduate,” a stage play based on the famous movie. It’s a piece that is, all at once, hilarious, sexy and topical.
The Venetian Theatre, a spectacular venue, is in the historic downtown district of Hillsboro. Originally built in 1888, the theater has been through several iterations since then. In 2001, the city of Hillsboro bought the theater to redevelop the property and bring it to its current glory.
Before the show, leave enough time to stop in at the lobby bistro. The menu is mostly Italian, including pizza, burgers and dessert. There are several gluten-free and vegan options, and the wine and cocktail list is very good, too. The folks who spend the most time at the bistro, the cast and crew members of “The Graduate,” highly recommend the roast pork and apple salad or the stuffed meatloaf.
After the show, hold hands and take a stroll west down Main Street to the Hillsboro Civic Plaza, where there is a fun fountain and lots of seating. It’s a beautiful setting for a kiss, serenaded by burbling water in the background.
If the weather keeps you from your stroll (or you just want to skip it), you can instead head across the street from the theater to Clark’s, for a post-show drink. Gaze into each other’s eyes over a cocktail or brew. There’s a good chance you might run into the cast and crew of “The Graduate” here — take a minute to greet them and tell them how much you liked the show (they love that).
This month, Hillsboro is the place for an evening of great entertainment, terrific food, beautiful outdoor scenery and a perfect nightcap. Your special date will thank you!
Kimberly St. John is a native Portlander and loves waterparks more than almost anything.